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SubjectRe: [PATCH] kdump: add default crashkernel reserve kernel config options
On Wed, 23 May 2018 10:53:55 -0500
ebiederm@xmission.com (Eric W. Biederman) wrote:

> Dave Young <dyoung@redhat.com> writes:
>
> > [snip]
> >
> >> >
> >> > +config CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_THRESHOLD_MB
> >> > + int "System memory size threshold for kdump memory default reserving"
> >> > + depends on CRASH_CORE
> >> > + default 0
> >> > + help
> >> > + CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_MB is used as default crashkernel value if
> >> > + the system memory size is equal or bigger than the threshold.
> >>
> >> "the threshold" is rather vague. Can it be clarified?
> >>
> >> In fact I'm really struggling to understand the logic here....
> >>
> >>
> >> > +config CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_MB
> >> > + int "Default crashkernel memory size reserved for kdump"
> >> > + depends on CRASH_CORE
> >> > + default 0
> >> > + help
> >> > + This is used as the default kdump reserved memory size in MB.
> >> > + crashkernel=X kernel cmdline can overwrite this value.
> >> > +
> >> > config HAVE_IMA_KEXEC
> >> > bool
> >> >
> >> > @@ -143,6 +144,24 @@ static int __init parse_crashkernel_simp
> >> > return 0;
> >> > }
> >> >
> >> > +static int __init get_crashkernel_default(unsigned long long system_ram,
> >> > + unsigned long long *size)
> >> > +{
> >> > + unsigned long long sz = CONFIG_CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_MB;
> >> > + unsigned long long thres = CONFIG_CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_THRESHOLD_MB;
> >> > +
> >> > + thres *= SZ_1M;
> >> > + sz *= SZ_1M;
> >> > +
> >> > + if (sz >= system_ram || system_ram < thres) {
> >> > + pr_debug("crashkernel default size can not be used.\n");
> >> > + return -EINVAL;
> >>
> >> In other words,
> >>
> >> if (system_ram <= CONFIG_CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_MB ||
> >> system_ram < CONFIG_CRASHKERNEL_DEFAULT_THRESHOLD_MB)
> >> fail;
> >>
> >> yes?
> >>
> >> How come? What's happening here? Perhaps a (good) explanatory comment
> >> is needed. And clearer Kconfig text.
> >>
> >> All confused :(
> >
> > Andrew, I tuned it a bit, removed the check of sz >= system_ram, so if
> > the size is too large and kernel can not find enough memory it will
> > still fail in latter code.
> >
> > Is below version looks clearer?
>
> What is the advantage of providing this in a kconfig option rather
> than on the kernel command line as we can now?

Yeah, I was about to ask the very same question.

Having spent quite some time on estimating RAM required to save a crash
dump, I can tell you that there is no silver bullet. My main objection
is that core dumps are saved from user space, and the kernel cannot
have a clue what it is going to be.

First, the primary kernel cannot know how much memory will be needed
for the panic kernel (not necessarily same as the primary kernel) and
the panic initrd. If you build a minimal initrd for your system, then
at least it depends on which modules must be included, which in turn
depends on where you want to store the resulting dump. Mounting a local
ext2 partition will require less software than mounting an LVM logical
volume in a PV accessed through iSCSI over two bonded Ethernet NICs.

Second, run-time requirements may vary wildly. While sending the data
over a simple TCP connection (e.g. using FTP) consumes just a few
megabytes even on 10G Ethernet, dm block devices tend to consume much
more, because of the additional buffers allocated by device mapper.

Third, systems should be treated as "big" not so much because of the
amount of RAM, but more so because of the amount of attached devices.
I've seen a machine with devices from /dev/sda to /dev/sdvm; try to
calculate how much kernel memory is taken just by their in-kernel
representation...

Fourth, quite often there is a trade-off between how much memory is
reserved for the panic environment, and how long dumping will take. For
example, you may take advantage of multi-threading in makedumpfile, but
obviously, the additional threads need more memory (or makedumpfile
will have to do its job in more cycles, reducing speed again). Oh, did
I mention that even bringing up more CPUs has an impact on kernel
runtime memory requirements?

In short, if one size fits none, what good is it to hardcode that "one
size" into the kernel image?

Petr T

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